Awaiting the calm after the storm.
We are getting a buffeting here in Bath today courtesy of Storm Noa. Not a good day to be out in a stormy sea…
I have seen the sun break through
to illuminate a small field
for a while, and gone my way
and forgotten it. But that was the
pearl of great price, the one field that had
treasure in it. I realise now
that I must give all that I have
to possess it. Life is not hurrying
on to a receding future, nor hankering after
an imagined past. It is the turning
aside like Moses to the miracle
of the lit bush, to a brightness
that seemed as transitory as your youth
once, but is the eternity that awaits you.
R S Thomas, The Bright Field
At the moment Bath is enveloped in angry skies
Nichola Theakston’s creations are stoic as only bronze can be.
Though it depicts a place in the south-east of England, this view reminds me of standing on Cherhill in Wiltshire, or up near the Westbury White Horse, where the hang-gliders launch themselves into the beyond…
Consider Icarus, pasting those sticky wings on,
testing that strange little tug at his shoulder blade,
and think of that first flawless moment over the lawn
of the labyrinth. Think of the difference it made!
There below are the trees, as awkward as camels;
and here are the shocked starlings pumping past
and think of innocent Icarus who is doing quite well.
Larger than a sail, over the fog and the blast
of the plushy ocean, he goes. Admire his wings!
Feel the fire at his neck and see how casually
he glances up and is caught, wondrously tunneling
into that hot eye. Who cares that he fell back to the sea?
See him acclaiming the sun and come plunging down
while his sensible daddy goes straight into town.
-Anne Sexton, To a Friend Whose Work Has Come to Triumph
And finally, for Sarah.
Do not care if you bring only your light body.
Would just be so happy to sit at the table
and talk about the menu. Miss you.
Wish we could bet which chilis they’ll put
on the cubes of tofu. Our favorite.
Sometimes green. Sometimes red. Roasted
we always thought. But so cold and fresh.
How did they do it? Wish you could be here
to talk about it like it was so important.
Wish you could. Watched you on the screens
as I was walking, as I was cooking. Wished you
could get out of the hospital. Can’t
bring myself to order our dish and eat it
in the car. Miss you laughing. Miss
you coming in from the cold or one
too many meetings. Laughing. I’ll order
already. I’ll order seven helpings, some
dumplings, those cold yam noodles that you
like. You can come in your light
body or skeleton or be invisible I don’t even
care. Know you have a long way to travel.
Know I don’t even know if it’s long
at all. Wish you could tell me. What
you’re reading. If you’re reading.
Miss you. I’m at the table in the back.
Miss you. Would like to grab that chilled tofu we love by
Thank you for reading,